VW to rely on CO2 certificates outside of Europe


The Volkswagen Group is also relying on the purchase of emissions certificates to meet its emission targets outside of Europe, as CEO Herbert Diess now confirmed. In Europe, Volkswagen is confident that it can meet its fleet targets.

+ + Kindly see our update below + +

In other markets such as China and the US, there are some smaller agreements to buy certificates, he said. “These are going down as we ramp up our electric strategy, and in two to three years they should be at zero,” Diess said during an online conference call with journalists. Diess, however, did not specify from which manufacturers the certificates would be bought, or, more importantly, at what cost.

At the beginning of April, it became known that Volkswagen was buying CO2 certificates from Tesla in China as part of its joint venture with FAW. FAW-Volkswagen had sold 2.16 million cars in 2020, but still primarily with petrol engines.

In January, Volkswagen had announced that the group had narrowly missed its 2020 CO2 targets by 0.5 g/km, despite a CO2 pool. The Volkswagen Passenger Cars and Audi brands, on the other hand, had exceeded their CO2 fleet targets, mainly due to the start-up of the ID.3 and rising e-tron sales. Group-wide, CO2 emissions had fallen by 20 per cent to 99.8 grams per kilometre compared to 2019.

This week, Carlos Tavares, CEO of Stellantis, the carmaker merged from PSA and FCA, had still announced that his group would not buy CO2 certificates this year. FCA had been one of the first carmakers to cut its emissions on paper through a CO2 pool with Tesla. “With the electrification technology that PSA has brought to Stellantis, we will already comply with CO2 emission regulations ourselves this year,” Tavares said now. “So we don’t have to claim European CO2 credits, and FCA doesn’t have to partner with Tesla or anyone anymore.” For Tesla, this removes a source of revenue: since 2019, FCA had paid around $2 billion to Tesla.

In another conference call, this time with analysts ahead of the quarterly results presentation, VW CEO Diess also indicated that Volkswagen planned to finance the six battery target factories announced for Europe mainly with the help of partners. Diess did not rule out an IPO for some of these activities. There is “great interest in the plans from industry groups in other sectors”, Diess is reported to have said.

Experts interviewed by Reuters estimate the financial requirements for these factories to be at least twelve billion euros. The first factory is Northvolt’s battery plant in Sweden, the second factory VW wants to operate itself in Salzgitter. This was originally to be a joint venture with Northvolt was planned here, but VW has since taken over. No such concrete statements have yet been made about the other four planned plants.

Update Tuesday 22 June 2021: After Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares announced that his group would no longer buy CO2 certificates this year, that step has now been completed. Stellantis was formed with a merging of FCA and PSA, and the latter of the two was one of the first automakers to reduce its emissions on paper via a CO2 pool with Tesla.

As Schmidt Automotive Research shows, Tesla’s CO2 pool in the EU now only includes Honda. The Japanese automaker had joined the pool last year.,, (in German), (update)


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